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Kentucky crop progress

Since the third week of July, the state has received a smorgasbord of weather conditions including heat, record low temperatures and severe storms. Average rainfall totaled 1.17 inches, slightly above normal, while the average temperature for the week ending July 27 was 75 degrees, 2 degrees below normal.

But hotter, more humid, weather had returned to the state by last weekend. The latest information from the U.S. Drought Monitor showed less of the state in the abnormally dry stage. Unfortunately much of that area, which located in southwestern Kentucky, has moved into the "moderate drought" stage.

This is beginning to affect some crops. The corn, according to the latest information from the NASS Kentucky field office report, was listed as 22 percent fair, 49 percent good and 17 percent excellent. Those numbers represent a slight decline in the crop condition over the previous week.

The state’s soybeans are seeing a condition decline, as well. NASS reported the crop to be 25 percent fair, 52 percent good and 14 percent excellent.

At this time last year, both corn and soybeans conditions began to climb into the positive range. That is just the opposite this year in both, meaning hopes of capturing another record crop year may be fading despite higher planted acreage.

Tobacco producers are also in need of more moisture, although conditions are holding steady for now. The crop is listed as being 24 percent fair, 54 percent good and 14 percent excellent. Fifty-four percent of the crop has bloomed, while nearly a quarter of tobacco has been topped.

Pasture conditions changed little over the last two weeks. The recent NASS report listed state pastures as 14 percent poor, 37 percent fair, 39 percent good and 4 percent excellent.

By Tim Thornberry

Kentucky Correspondent

8/6/2014